A Touch of Understanding (ATOU)

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A Touch of Understanding (ATOU)

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How did I get Involved?

In 2012 I began going to a stroke group at American River college, in this group I met people who had gone through just what I had gone through. I met people that were both older and younger than me, both women and men. I remain very close to members of this group today, and I can say that I love each and every one of them. Doris Hernandez-Morales is the founder and she is very dedicated to the stroke group to which I belong to (for more information on this group you can call: 916.806.0604 or email: doris_hernandezmorales@yahoo.com). Through both Doris and Paula (another friend/member of the group) I was introduced to checkout A Touch of Understanding (ATOU). I attended my first ATOU presentation as a spectator in December of 2013 in Rancho Cordova, CA.

Seeing this presentation, both the speakers portion and the group activities I could see first hand how this program touches the lives of everyone involved. During the presentation children get to participate in several hands on see activities, ask questions, learn & listen to ATOU. speakers. During the presentation I was inspired so much I wanted to start volunteering the next day.

However; because school started up for me in January I was unable to get involved I had a 9:00am calculus based statistics class (9:00am M/W/TH/F). This was the last class I needed before I got my degree so I was quite involved. After class my teacher had an office hour which I attended daily because seldom did he have other students in his office at that time. Often I would also attend another section of the same class (repetition always helps, right?)

Upon graduation I did several things that I had wanted to do for quite some time. One of them was to visit both Disneyland and California Adventure with just my wife (We left Sacramento on the 8th of July 2014).

After a short break I received a phone call from a company in Southern California called Certifix. They wanted me to work on one of their live scan computers here in Sacramento so they did not have to send someone up. I remembered that I needed to be “live scanned” myself (for those of you that don’t know this is just another way to say digital fingerprinting), that day I got live scanned in Loomis, CA at the sheriffs station (because it was free) and turned in my paperwork to ATOU. Within a couple weeks I created my video, prepared and gave my first speech on 8/27/14.

How can you get involved?

ATOU is a great program and I have grown as well as touched the lives of others around me. I highly encourage you to get involved. ATOU is always looking for volunteers, if your interested please contact Jeneane Stover @ 916-791-4146 (Volunteer Coordinator) you may also visit their website for more information.

Speaking for ATOU:

I first spoke for ATOU on 8/27/14, below you will see a table of the presentations I have been apart of. When I speak I try to adapt to my audience and I go to where the spirit brings me. Most of the time were are at Elementary schools, but I have spoken at one high school in Placerville, CA to a sophomore class (that was cool because I got to speak to two kids that played water polo). I believe that each time I speak there are certain children that need to hear certain things from me, I try to teach them a little about stroke, tell them my story, get them involved and most importantly let them know to never give up on their dreams.

The Numbers:

Date School Address Grade Children
9/10/14 Buckeye Elementary 4561 Buckeye Rd, Shingle Springs, CA 95682 5th 72
9/17/14 Twin Oaks Elementary 2835 Club Drive, Rocklin, CA 95765 4th 83
9/24/14 El Dorado High School 561 Canal Street, Placerville CA 95667 10th 25
10/08/14 St.Albans School 2312 Vernon Street, Roseville, CA 95678 5th 24
10/15/14 Stoneridge Elementary 2501 Alexandra Drive, Roseville, CA 95661 3rd 84
10/30/14 Blue Oaks Elementary. 8150 Horncastle Ave, Roseville, CA 95747 4th 95
 11/5/14 Bannon Creek Elementary  2775 Millcreek Drive, Sacramento CA 95833 6th  63
 11/12/14  Alpine Meadows Elementary  8343 Palmerson Dr, Antelope, CA 95843 4th 158
 11/20/14  Excelsior Elementary  2701 Eureka Rd, Roseville, CA 95661 6th 102
 Total:  704

My Social Media Involvement:

I help in administrating the facebook pages for both  ATOU and the ATOU Youth F.O.R.C.E. In addition I have created an Instagram account which is our handle/username is @atouchofunderstanding [click here for web access]. We are looking to expand our social media reach, if there is anyone within the ATOU family that already has some experience in using or administrating social media accounts please contact matt@mdccomputersolutions.com.


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